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SubjectRe: "Mother" == "computer-illiterate"
On Thu, Jan 09, 2003 at 12:20:43AM -0700, Val Henson wrote:
> On Wed, Jan 08, 2003 at 11:29:47AM +0900, Miles Bader wrote:
> >
> > If someone's mom (having heard the gossip) asks their computer-literate
> > child, `What is this XXX thing, anyway?', the answer is likely to be
> > very different when XXX is "GNU" as opposed to when XXX is "Linux".
> How come no one ever talks about a Linux distribution so easy that
> your grandfather could install it? Or a kernel configuration tool so
> simple that even Uncle Timmy can use it?
> Can we quit with the "clueless mother" examples already? My own
> mother has installed more distributions of Linux than I've even logged
> into. I know quite a few mothers who have PhDs in CS, own several
> CS-related patents, and/or made important fundamental discoveries in
> CS. Hint: Find out who invented the spanning tree algorithm for
> ethernet bridges, $10 ThinkGeek gift certificate to the first person
> who emails me the correct answer.

And the winner is David Hoose, who sent the answer to me 10 minutes
after the message to linux-kernel arrived in my mail queue. The
answer is:

Radia Perlman

She is the inventor of the spanning tree algorithm, the author of
"Interconnections: Bridges, Routers, Switches, and Internetworking
Protocols" from Addison-Wesley, and the mother of at least two
children. Honorable mention to: Joe Perches, Joe Sloan, Chris Ricker,
Larry McVoy, and "Disconnect," real name withheld.


P.S. For extra credit (but no ThinkGeek certificate) you can look up
the following women in computer science, some of whom are mothers:
Mary Baker, Margo Seltzer, Monica Lam, Ellen Spertus, Carla Ellis, and
Barbara Simons.
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